Defenses have always valued cornerbacks who play the ball well, but the evolution of explosive passing attacks in the NFL means those players carry even more value in today's game.
Finding those players is easier said than done, though. Burst, speed, long arms and big hands obviously help, but it takes more than physical tools to be a difference-maker in coverage. Aggressiveness, instincts and positioning also play important roles.
Who in the 2012 class has those qualities? Here's a look at five corners with the potential to develop into playmakers at the next level, and where they could end up.
To read the full article, you must be an ESPN Insider. Sign up today and get all of Insider's NFL draft coverage!